Friday, May 30, 2014

How To Make a 'Schools Out' Congratulations Gift for Kids

I have always thought it was important to celebrate each year that our kids survive another year at school; no matter what grade it is. Celebrations can be in the form of going out to dinner, getting ice cream, a remembrance gift, a card or just something silly. I, personally, like the silly and fun gifts. Here is one idea on how to make your kids a 'Schools Out' congratulations gift. 

My girls, like most kids, love candy, so I thought that instead of just giving them some candy I would write them a little note to go along with it. 

I incorporated each type of candy within the note to make the note extra special and entertaining. 

Make sure to wrap the candy with pretty ribbon. 

Have fun and get creative! I love to surprise my girls and my after schooler's. If school has already dismissed for the year in your town, feel free to pin this for the next school year. 

Have a super and safe summer! 

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

House of Fauci's Liebster Award Nomination

Liebster Award-- Hang on, let me Google that! 

Addie Danielle from Old World New Girl was kind enough to nominate little o' me for the Liebster Award and to that I say 'I accept and thank you!'. Side note, Addie Danielle and I share names! My middle name is Danielle! A week later Kathryn Leigh Baugher from Up To Date Interiors asked me also.. WOW I am either popular or they see my followers are low. 
  1. I was born and raised in Texas and I thank the Lord above for this! 
  2. In order for me to enjoy a drink it must be served in a Styrofoam cup- stays colder longer. 
  3. I could live off of cake. 
  4. I have 6 kids- 3 non bio and 3 bio. 2 grand kids as well and growing. 
  5. I have a fear of getting a 'gobbler' so I have been doing chin exercises since I was like 10 years old! (I kid you not!)
  6. I wish I could swim! 
  7. I sometimes miss working outside of my home but then really think about it and am grateful I can work in my home. 
  8. My taste buds are finally starting to grow up! I have learned to try and have actually enjoyed new foods lately. Still don't like the spice tho. 
  9. I  have been married to my husband for a very long time; 16 years + 3 years of being together = 19 years! 
  10. I believe the best movies are the movies made in the 80's and 90's. Hello.. Pretty in Pink, Poltergeist, and so many more! 
  11. I enjoy cooking and can't wait for my girls to one day appreciate good home made food.
Since Old World New Girl asked me first, I decided I would answer her questions- would hate to bore y'all. 
  1. If you could choose any country to live in, which would it be? I have to say I would insist on staying in the good ol USA! This is a wonderful country where we have so many freedoms! 
  2. Why do I blog? I began to blog when my good friend said I should. I said, 'No one will read it'. and she said that they would because I was funny. I actually love to write and love to share my thoughts.
  3. Vanilla, Chocolate or Cookies & Cream? Definitely Vanilla! Vanilla may sound boring but you can top it up with different flavors. 
  4. Beach, Lake or River? I hate sand, so I would have to say the lake. My girls and I have a new found love for fishing! 
  5. Metroplex, City, Small Town, Hillside or Countryside? Hands down Countryside! The peacefulness, the critters and the beauty of it are amazing. 
  6. What is your favorite TV show or Movie? That is a tough question because I watch so many shows but not sure if I have a favorite one. Oh wait, back up the truck... Little House on the Prairie. Call me old school, but I almost have the entire DVD collection and pray my girls will one day enjoy it with me. 
  7. Describe your dream house? My dream house has so much light! It also has a section for my kids, guests, and my husband and I. It has a hideaway for mama when she needs a break and the kitchen has so many cabinets that each pan and pot and glass bowl has its own shelf! 
  8. What is your super power *what you are really good at*? Multi tasking! Too often people ask me how I manage to get so much done. I multi task and just do it! 
  9. Your favorite meal to prepare, buy/ share? I seem to always cook a mixture of ground turkey, black beans, saute spinach, tomatoes and cheese. With this mixture I can do so much with it like add it to salad, top it on nachos or plop on a baked potato and it's super healthy. 
  10. Glitter, Gloss, or Matte? I may not be a girly girl, but I love my glitter. 
  11. Back Road muddin' or Water Theme Park? Well seeing how I don't swim, I will definitely take the Back Road Muddin' and it sounds fun!
  1. Your 'go to' drink?
  2. Favorite type of pizza?
  3. Your dream career- if there were no boundaries?
  4. When you look in the mirror, what do you see?
  5. Could you survive the Hunger Games?
  6. Where is the best place you have ever traveled?
  7. Would you rather travel by car, airplane, subway, bus or train?
  8. If you were a dwarf... which of Snow White's dwarfs would you be?
  9. Can you blow a double bubble?
  10. Have you ever been in a natural disaster?
  11. We ALL get jealous of something... what do you secretly get jealous about? (It's okay, it is natural)

  1. The Randomosity of Southern Fried Domestication
  2. Neatly Packaged
  3. Cosmos Mariners 
  4. Fit 2B Mommy
  5. The Lovely Photog
  6. Being Royalty
***to be continued..***

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

'Finish This' Week 21

Guess what day it is?

Yes, that is what I would say also, but today is also the link up to 'Finish This'! The 'Finish Up' ladies and I cordially invite you to join us each HUMP DAY. Just click here

Now let's get started with the Wednesday fun! 

1- The best mistake I ever made... trusting that I was not able to get pregnant! 

2- From this mistake, I learned... that you should 'never say never'! 

3- When I am anxious, I tell myself... to calm down and breath but to grab the Imodium just in case that does not work. 
But do grab the Imodium.. just in case! 
4- All I really want to do is... have a day or two alone. Just a day where I can rest and not worry about laundry, dishes, who is crying, who is fighting who. Just a day to rest my sleepy head. 

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Comal County Tacos - A House of Fauci's Restaurant Review

Every now and then my husband and I just like to drive! We pile into the car with no where in our mind to go and we drive to see what discovery we can make. One Saturday morning after we got our standard Sonic teas we were driving down Highway 46 and saw a little taco shop. We pulled into the tiny parking lot to get a closer look. The first thing we noticed was how crowded it was. There were several cars constantly going in and out of the parking lot and the building was bright orange and tiny. I made a note that later in life we would definitely have to check it out and so we did.

On this day, my son was in town so after grabbing my girls some donuts, the boy and I headed down to try out some breakfast tacos. I was excited, not only because I was going to get to try out a new establishment but because since moving out of San Antonio there was no longer a taco shop on every corner. 

When you first walk into Comal County Tacos the first thing you notice is how small the inside is and then you notice how simple it is. You have 2 women behind the counter serving up Mexican goodness and then you have a few other women in the back preparing the food and cleaning up. To be honest I used to be nervous about establishments like this but since having lived in San Antonio for 3 years I learned that these are most often the best Mexican restaurants to eat at.

The menu listed around 10, if not a little more, types of tacos. Of course I ordered simple, Bacon and Egg. My son ordered, I believe, Chorizo and then a Suicide. The Suicide had a variety of taco fillings; hence the name. 

Overall I have to say that Comal County Tacos was really good. From their home made tortillas to the fresh ingredients to the sweet ladies in the front, we enjoyed it and will definitely be back very soon. On a side note, we went to Comal County Tacos on a Wednesday morning at 9AM. We sat inside to eat and the entire time there was a constant flow of people that came in and out of the restaurant; another sign of its goodness. 

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Sweet Bacon Chicken

I was wanting to find a recipe for chicken tenders, so I did what everyone else in America does and perused Pinterest. I found an awesome recipe for Sweet and Spicy Bacon Chicken so I decided to take a look. Anyone that knows me, knows that the word 'spicy' is a huge turn off for me, so I decided to change the recipe up a bit. I promise, this recipe is amazing! 

Sweet and salty are two mixes that I love and this recipe gives you that and more. 

I seasoned my chicken tenders using garlic salt, pepper, a tad bit of regular salt, and this awesome Applewood Rub that I found in my spice cabinet. After I seasoned my chicken I wrapped each piece in bacon and then I coated each bacon wrapped chicken in brown sugar and placed them on the pan.

Bake at 400 degrees for around 30-40 minutes. If I were to do this again I would put a wire rack over the pan and place the wrapped chickens on the wire rack so the chicken did not cook in the bacon grease. 

I hope you enjoy this deliciousness as much as my family did! 

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Welcome to Gruene, Texas

The other day we spent most of the day in Gruene, Texas. If you don't know where Gruene is, it is about 40 (give or take) minutes from San Antonio, Texas or 40 (give or take) minutes from Austin, Texas. It is a little town that is not only breathtaking but a town that is full of history and shopping; along with so many good places to eat! Here is a little bit of Gruene in the eyes of the Fauci's. 

When we arrived in Gruene, we had to eat. I wanted to eat by the river at an awesome place called Gristmill, but we ended up eating at another fabulous place called Cantina del Rio. This was our second time to eat here and it was just as fabulous as the first time. We sat on the deck with a nice breeze blowing. The adults ate amazing fish tacos and the girls ate the best fries and nachos.  

After lunch it was time to explore the town. For a Wednesday the town was bustling, but not too much to make it uncomfortable. Gruene has so many awesome buildings that have been converted into Bed & Breakfasts. I've never stayed at a Bed & Breakfast but would consider it so that I could enjoy the Gruene nightlife. 

As we stroll through Gruene there are so many cute shops that sell a variety of merchandise. Each shop is unique and each shop owner is personable and ready to chat. 

If you need a sit down, something cool to eat, if you want to chat with friends or if you just want to grab some fun items then head on over to the General Store. This is a cute store that has tons of candy, honey, hot sauce, cool and unique items, tons of ice cream and fudge. Oh yes, fudge! 

For those that want to enjoy a cold beer, some live music and dancing, you need to stop by Gruene Hall; Texas' Oldest Dance Hall. Gruene Hall not only plays live music at night but also during the day. It is a great place to relax and listen to some awesome music. Gruene Hall has had artists from Willie Nelson to the Bacon Brothers. 

I have only highlighted a little bit of Gruene. There is so much more that this little town offers. If you are visiting Austin, San Antonio or the surrounding areas you should take a day and visit Gruene. Like I said, not only is it beautiful but it has greats shopping, yummy eats, and super nice people. 

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

'Finish This' Week 20

Come on guys- join us in the 'Finish This' link up. I promise not only will you have fun but you will be hooked like a fish that has mistaken that floating worm for dinner. 

Here we go:

My favorite recipe (of mine) is... Chocolate Chip Banana Muffins. Oh yes, you can just have one, or two or three? These muffins are the BOMB.. Oh wait, my 9 year old told me that NO ONE says that anymore! Okay, they are amazingly delicious! Of course I will share my link, I would be cruel (and stupid) if I did not!

I believe in...JINXES and Premonitions! Call me crazy, you won't be the first one. Back in the days when my oldest three were under the age of 8, all three kids were playing. All of a sudden I had a premonition that one of them was going to get hurt, like really hurt. I brushed it off and then a few minutes later, BAM, one of the boys got a forehead gash from hitting his head on the table and stitches were needed. Just the other day I was cleaning and saw a bag of toys and thought of someone in the family getting stung by a scorpion. What do you know, that day my 7 year old got stung! I now find myself saying 'It's not going to happen' over and over again after I have one. I know I know.. call me crazy! 

I am also HUGE on the belief of JINXES. For example, I have bragged about how great my child is sleeping and then a day later she starts to sleep horribly. If I say, 'Oh my kids have not gotten sick all year.'.. BAM, they get sick. In my mind, it is okay to think these things, just don't say them! It's okay, call me crazy, but I'm not chancing it. 

 I need to set boundaries... on how often I go to Sonic! I find myself going to Sonic sometimes 6 days a week and sometimes twice a day! I can't help myself, have you had their tea w flavorings? In addition, they have all Large drinks for 99 cents before 10am and their Happy Hour specials daily from 2-4pm with all drinks half off, who can resist? You'd think they would send me some free drinks for all this advertisement! I love my Sonic tea and I love the Sonic flavors and I love the Sonic cups and God Bless the Sonic ice! If you don't have a Sonic in your parts you are truly missing out. 

I began living when... my husband and I first got together and put our finances together. We set vacation goals and accomplished them and took the now older kids to a variety of different trips; mainly Disney. Now with the three younger ones we've kinda just stopped 'living' and gotten into the robot motion of life. It stinks BUT we did get an RV so we are now going to start living again. I can't wait! Sigh...if only I had a nanny. 

Monday, May 19, 2014

Snickerdoodle Bundt Cake- Pin It Or Forget It

I love Pinterest, who doesn't .. right? I have an incredible amount of recipes, home improvements, and other activities that are just waiting for me to try out, but can't find the time or don't have the ingredients or supplies to do them all. After much pinning, I have decided that it is time to try a few out and post my results. Since I have never made a Bundt Cake, I made the decision to find a Bundt Cake recipe on Pinterest, make it and determine if I should 'pin it' or 'forget it'. 

I purchased my first Bundt Cake pan and decided to go to Pinterest and find a recipe that was pretty basic since this was going to be my first time to bake a Bundt Cake. I have to say that it did not take me long to find the perfect recipe; it had me at cinnamon and sugar. 

Snickerdoodle Bundt Cake- found at 'Lick The Bowl Good

I love the combination of sugar and cinnamon so I knew that this recipe was going to be the perfect recipe. I enlisted the help of my girls to help bake. 

This was a very simple recipe with ingredients that I already had in my pantry. The only changes that I made were reducing the sugar, using regular salt and lathering the pan with butter . 

Preheat oven to 325 degrees

Mix 2 tsp cinnamon1 cup sugar in a small bowl. Spray with non stick spray, Crisco or lather your Bundt Cake pan with butter and sprinkle half of the sugar & cinnamon mixture. Set the remaining to the side. 

Sift 2 1/2 cups of flour, 1 tsp baking powder, 1/2 tsp baking soda and pinch of kosher salt (or regular salt). Set aside. 

Beat 1 cup of butter. Add 1 cup of white sugar (I reduced to 1/2 a cup) and 1 cup of light brown sugar (I reduced to 1/2 a cup) and 3 eggs. Mix it all together. Stir in 2 tsp of vanilla and then mix in the flour/baking powder, baking soda and salt mix that you set to the side. As you are mixing in the flour mixture, stir in 1 cup of regular sour cream (I promise you can't taste the sour cream). 

Spread 1/2 of the cake mixture into your Bundt Cake pan. Sprinkle 1/2 of the sugar and cinnamon mixture over the mix. Spread the remaining cake mixture over the sugar and cinnamon mix and then sprinkle the remaining cinnamon and sugar mixture over the last amount of cake mix. Now if I was to bake this again I would not have the extra sugar and cinnamon mixture. I would only use the cinnamon and sugar mix for coating the pan. This ends up being a lot of sugar. 

Bake in your preheated over for 55-65 minutes. (I did 60 minutes) Use the toothpick method to make sure it is ready. Allow the cake to cool before you flip it out of the pan. 

For my first ever Bundt Cake I was impressed. It was a quick mix and easy to follow recipe. I love cinnamon and sugar mixes, but I will say that this had a bit too much sugar. My suggestion is to follow the sugar reductions that I made; your thighs and dentist will thank you. 

After my girls and I had a 'few' pieces of this Snickerdoodle Bundt Cake we determined that this Pinterest recipe was definitely a... 

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Marianito's Extreme Tex Mex Grill - A 'House of Fauci's' Experience

When our family first moved to San Antonio three years ago we were amazed by the food selection that this great city had to offer. This city had fabulous Mexican food, BBQ, awesome burgers and so much more. Having watched many food challenge episodes on the Travel Channel and Food Network we discovered that San Antonio had quite a bit of restaurants that were highlighted on these shows. One San Antonio restaurant that caught our attention was Marianito's Extreme Tex Mex Grill; home of the 7 Pound Burrito.

The 7 pound burrito, also known as the Extreme Grizzly Burrito, is a big tortilla stuffed with carna guisada, refried beans, cheese, enchilada sauce, queso, guacamole, sour cream and red tortillas. The burrito costs around $25 and if you can finish the challenge in an hour, you get it for free! 

 Before we arrived at Marianito's Extreme Tex Mex Grill it was decided that the 4 Fauci adults would order the 7 Pound Burrito and eat it as a family. We had no interest in any of us being in the competition but we wanted to get our picture next to it and then eat it so we could say we did. The burrito was huge! Like 'how can anyone finish this in an hour' huge? Well, I found a local on YouTube that did and she is a chick! 

Our family did not made a huge dent in the burrito while we were at the restaurant but for a family the value of the burrito was great! This burrito, which tasted great, made a total of 8 - 9 total servings. 

Have you or your family or friends ever done a food challenge? If so, what? If you have not done one, what food challenge would you want to take on?

Written by: Aimee Fauci

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Moroccan Bites, San Antonio, Texas- A 'House of Fauci's' Review

My husband and I love to watch travel and food shows that highlight restaurants from cities that are near us. A few weeks ago, we were watching Diners, Drive Ins and Dives hosted by Guy Fieri. He was in San Antonio, Texas, at a local restaurant called 'Moroccan Bites'; not sure if it was a dive or a diner. After we watched the episode I looked up at my husband and said, 'We HAVE to go there!'. 
Moroccan Bites is not a restaurant I would have ever gone to without first having seen it featured on Diners, Drive Ins and Dives. I am that type of eater that knows what kind of food I like and is not easily willing to try a new type of food, but when I saw this restaurant featured, my taste buds told me that I had to get past my fear and give it a try. I was glad that I did. 

The first thing that I noticed when I walked into Moroccan Bites was the beautiful decorations and the wall art. In addition, the restaurant was not large but very quaint and cozy. At the time we were the only guests in the restaurant so I thought it would be a perfect opportunity to walk around and take pictures of the beautiful decor. I noticed that two rooms were blocked off, fancied up and reserved. I wish I had gotten my husband to ask who those two rooms were for. 

After watching Diners, Drive Ins and Dives I had pretty much decided that I wanted lamb, but I was not sure what the dish was called or which dish to choose. 

After I talked to the waitress I decided that I wanted to order the Lamb Tagin with Vegetables along with a side of rice. The waitress explained to me that it was a type of stew. 
When my Lamb Tagine was served my first thought was how pretty it was. This dish had color and you could tell that the vegetables were cooked to perfection. The lamb was almost perfect, it had a few chewy pieces and seemed a bit greasy, but it was good. In addition, the vegetables which included potatoes, peas, and corn were cooked to perfection. They were so fresh and tender. I also ordered a side of rice and almost ate the entire bowl. The side dish was enough for 2 or more people, but I ate most of it. 

My husband always seems to order the best dish. On this day he ordered the Lamb Kebab with a side of french fries. He was going to order steamed vegetables as his side dish but we had our 2 year old with us so he got the fries for her which she enjoyed. He said that his lamb was cooked to perfection! After his dish was served, the waitress offered him some hot sauce and he said it was too hot for me. I wish I had tried his lamb before he spiced it up. 

This was my first experience to eat Moroccan Food and I must say that it was good. The food was fresh and the ambiance was fantastic. I think I already know what I will be ordering the next time we visit Moroccan Bites in San Antonio, Texas.